Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Low income families hit hardest by global crisis

Low income families hit hardest by global crisis and high housing costs


“The effects on families of the global financial crisis, lack of adjustment of the accommodation supplement and high housing costs show up in the latest Household Incomes Report from the Ministry of Social Development,” says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg.

“The report shows the impact of the recession was felt hardest on the 60 percent lowest income households but recovery for them has been no faster than for others. These lowest income households have had no increase in their take-home incomes after the rising cost of living (CPI) is taken into account between 2008 and 2012, while those with higher incomes saw a 5 percent gain”, says Rosenberg. “This takes no account of the fact that GST hits low income families harder, and that the cost of living for low income families has risen faster than for those on higher incomes.”

“The cost of housing is taking a deep toll. Housing stress – where housing costs exceed 30 percent of disposable income – is at its highest levels in decades for all households," Rosenberg said.

The report comments that because are incomes rising more slowly than housing costs and that Accommodation Supplement rules have not been properly adjusted since 2005 so that half of recipients were on the maximum in 2013 compared to only a third in 2007. In 2013 almost all of the people receiving the supplement to help with rents were in housing stress, and almost half were spending more than half of their take-home incomes on rent.

“Clearly, this is not a good time to be toughening up rules on eligibility for state housing and income-related rents as the government is doing, and wages are not keeping up with rising housing prices.” Rosenberg said.

“Meanwhile, people surviving on benefits are falling further and further behind with their real net incomes falling between 2007 and 2014.” Rosenberg said.

"While the Ministry is unwilling to say that inequality has increased, there are clear warning signs. Half of households have seen no increase in their incomes between 2008 and 2012. The 80/20 percentile income ratio after housing costs has been higher than it was in the 2008 year for four years now. The Gini coefficient has jumped up again. Even if the Gini’s movement is not statistically significant, inequality is far higher than it was in the early 1980s, and far higher than it should be.”

“Our tax system is weak compared to other countries in reducing this inequality. We need changes to our wages system so before-tax income is shared more fairly, and a more progressive tax system on income and wealth. Such changes are essential to ensure that the income from a growing economy will go to those who have earned it and most need it,"Rosenberg said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Aftermath Of The Greenwald/Snowden Revelations

The credibility issues have come down to two main ones:

1 The email This has to do with whether Key knowingly agreed to use our immigration rules as a tool to ensnare and ultimately extradite Kim Dotcom, and do so largely at the behest of Hollywood’s leading corporates and their best friend in the White House, vice-President Joseph Biden. Some of the debate in the last few days has turned on the reliability of a Warners email that seems to set out this plan in black and white. IMO, the email is just the icing on the cake...

2. Mass surveillance Earlier to day I was going to try to explain the difference between what Edward Snowden/Glenn Greenwald were talking about (ie mass surveillance via the the cable-accessing SPEARGUN programme and the Xkeyscore analytical programme) and what Key has chosen to talk about instead in order to deliberately distract and confuse the public. Then I found that Keith Ng had not only beaten me to it, but had done so with beautiful lucidity. More>>

Out-Link - "Project SPEARGUN underway" • OnPoint • Public Address

Statement From The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security

“I am only able to comment on specific GCSB activities through my annual and inquiry reports. However, I can advise that I have not identified any indiscriminate interception of New Zealanders’ data in my work to date. I will continue to monitor these issues.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Election Ad Soundtrack: Rapper Eminem Sues National Party Over Copyright Breach

US rapper Eminem is suing the New Zealand National Party for alleged copyright infringement over unauthorised use of the rapper’s ‘Lose Yourself’ song in an election campaign advertisement. More>>

ALSO:

Pre-Election Chartering: Four New Partnership Schools To Open

Education Minister Hekia Parata today announced the Government has signed contracts to open four new Partnership Schools in 2015. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf 50 Out Now - The Election Issue: Loss Leaders

Gordon Campbell: A third term requires a mature decision, with eyes wide open. It calls for a conscious vote of confidence… Without trying hard here are about 19 reasons, in no particular order, for not ticking ‘party vote’ National. More>>

ALSO:

Not-Especially New Plans: All Prisons To Become Working Prisons Under National

All public prisons in New Zealand will become full working prisons by 2017, and ex-prisoners will receive post-release drug addiction treatment if National is returned to government, says Corrections Spokesperson Anne Tolley. More>>

ALSO:

Māngere: "False Claim Of Matai Title" - Labour

National must explain why its candidate for Māngere Misa Fia Turner appears to be using a Matai title she is not entitled to, Labour’s MP for Māngere and Pacific Islands Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio says. A Matai title is a legally-recognised ... More>>

ALSO:

CPAG Report: No New Zealand Child Should Grow Up In Poverty

Child Poverty Action Group's flagship policy publication Our Children, Our Choice: Priorities for Policy calls for cross party political agreement to underpin an action plan to eliminate child poverty in New Zealand. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On National’s Phantom Tax Cut Package

Hmmm. So National’s tax cuts package turns out to be one of those television advertisements that screams a headline promise – perfect skin! a youth tonic that works! – while in very small print there’s an out clause: special conditions may apply. More>>

ALSO:

Water: New Marine Reserves On West Coast Opened

Five new marine reserves were officially opened by Conservation Minister Dr Nick Smith on the West Coast of the South Island to protect a range of marine ecosystems for conservation, science and recreation. More>>

ALSO:

Perception: Study Looks At Trustworthiness And Support Of Politicians

A University of Canterbury marketing study has looked at what impact the Thatcher Effect has on perceptions of trustworthiness and liking of New Zealand politicians leading up to the 2014 general election. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news